|November 22nd, 2015||#1|
Join Date: Jul 2014
'The Global War on Terror'
The Greatest Racket of All Time
By Pater Tenebrarum
November 21, 2015
One would think that the so-called “Global War on Terror”, which has been given fresh impetus by the Paris attacks, must be going swimmingly. What else could explain the great enthusiasm with which it is pursued? It may be recalled that it started in earnest after the WTC attack – also a declaration of war, as it was put at the time.
As is often the case when Islamist fundamentalists strike, the actual attackers immolated themselves on occasion of the attack itself, making it impossible to exact retribution. Except by proxy, that is. This was playing right into the hands of those who had planned the attacks. It seems to us that they have ultimately succeeded beyond their wildest dreams. Not to put too fine a point to it, our wise political leaders have evidently been outfoxed by a bunch of turbaned cave dwellers and goat buggerers in the Hindu Kush.
To wit, between 2013 and 2014, the global death toll from terrorist attacks has increased by yet another 80%,setting a new sad record. So 15 years of bombing places far and wide to smithereens, engaging in extremely costly “nation building” exercises, droning assorted terrorist groups so thoroughly that selected Al Qaeda leaders can by now boast of having been killed up to 17 times (only to miraculously reappear again), have produced thisby way of bottom line results:
The result to date of 15 years of “Global War on Terrorism” – there is more terrorism than ever before – click to enlarge.
This is eerily reminiscent of the US government’s “War on Poverty”, which stopped the decline in poverty dead in its tracks the moment it began, or the even worse effort known as the “War on Drugs”, which has done nothing to decrease the drug epidemic, but has given birth to the largest and most brutal criminal cartels the world has ever seen. Can people really be that stupid? Unfortunately the answer is yes, they can. This is only half of the answer though.
Death by terrorism in 2014. Not a single Western country even makes the list (and even now, France would not make it). The biggest number of victims can be found in places like Iraq and Nigeria. Boko Haram has killed even more people than ISIS in 2014 (the deaths in Iraq are not exclusively attributable to IS) – click to enlarge.
The Greatest Racket of All Time
The other half of the answer has been already been supplied decades ago by the legendary Smedley Butler: War is a racket. However, most people are blissfully unaware of how big a racket it actually is. It is in fact the greatest scam ever – even the more recent “climate change” scam is comfortably put in the shade by it.
Why are all Republican presidential candidates (apart from two exceptions) and Democratic front-runner Billary alike loudly screeching for more war, in spite of the sobering evidence? When confronted with such seemingly intractable questions, it is usually a good idea to follow the money. Should the mafia be aware of the associated statistics, it is presumably green with envy. Readers should definitely take the time to read Tom Engelhardt’s recent article “It’s a $cam” in its entirety. Below we are presenting just a handful of morsels from the first few paragraphs:
The article continues in this vein and believe it or not, the above was just the harmless stuff. It becomes evenmore absurd as one reads on. Not only do the numbers become ever more staggering, the failures become concomitantly greater and more bizarre (such as the $43 million compressed natural gas station in Afghanistan, similar to one built in neighboring Pakistan for $300,000, located in an area bereft of infrastructure capable of delivering natural gas; or the $8.4 billion pumped into an Afghan “drug eradication program”, which was followed by a hitherto unbroken string of record opium harvests).
That is however not all. Even more astounding is the fact that most of the individuals who demonstrably bear personal responsibility for these cases of fraudulent theft of taxpayer funds have not only not been sanctioned, but have in fact been rewarded and promoted. As Engelhardt puts is:
The war on terror is the best racket yet – it is a gift that will likely keep on giving for a very long time. It possesses a certain fateful inevitability: Western governments go about poking assorted hornet’s nests, until the hornets come swarming out to sting us, providing fresh reasons to expand the war.
This is not meant to imply that one shouldn’t defend oneself against terrorism, but it might be a good idea to reevaluate the strategy (as Justin Raimondo noted, at this juncture, simply quarantining IS may be worth considering). Doing more of what clearly hasn’t worked so far is certainly likely to keep the above mentioned racket going, but based on the evidence it isn’t going to achieve much else.
Miscalculations Coming Home to Roost
The conflict in Syria specifically has been characterized by miscalculations galore. It seems everybody is finally realizing that IS may be more of a threat than was hitherto assumed. As a number of governments in the region that are allied with the West have found out, they are in a situation akin to that the sorcerer’s apprentice found himself in. The spirits they have summoned are now ignoring their commands – and they can no longer get rid of them.
Arab potentates aren’t the only ones in the region beginning to wonder what they have cultivated next door in their eagerness to see Syrian tinpot despot Assad toppled. Even the Grand Poobah of Turkey has recently begun to sound a bit worried.
As an aside to all this, Abdel Hamid Abaaoud (born in Belgium, natch), the suspected mastermind of the Paris attacks, seems blessed with an extraordinary amount of luck. He keeps getting caught, but manages to escape every time. He enjoys freedom of movement all over the show, in spite of having starred in truly gruesome IS videos, meaning he’s not exactly Mr. Anonymous. Some people are beginning to wonder how this is possible, since Allah seems highly unlikely to have anything to do with it, contrary to Abaaoud’s claims. It smells of state support actually.
Bigger than expectedHelloooo dogg…doggie? My, how big you are! And what big teeth you have!
Addendum: Deep State Piping Up, Resurgent Putin
Meanwhile, Deep State representatives are once again sensing an opening. They have already reiterated their nonsensical, nay, downright dangerous demand to do away with encryption on a “just trust us” basis (see the assessment of cyber-security specialist Brian Krebs here). The idea is totally hare-brained, i.e., par for the course for government bureaucrats.
And wouldn’t you know, it’s all Edward Snowden’s fault, for having provided proof of the unconstitutional misdeeds of certain spook agencies. Presumably he has magically caused the French authorities to ignore warnings about the terrorists and the planned attacks they received from at least three different foreign intelligence services by inundating them with his traitor-rays from Moscow.
Finally, in an exceedingly amusing development, Vladimir Putin appears to have morphed overnight from pariah and enemy du jour to the “go to man”/ “hottest ticket in town” on fighting IS (or the “problem solver who cannot be ignored”, as the FT averred). Not that he is doing anything different – he is also poking the hornet’s nest and getting stung in return. However, everybody knows he is different in at least one respect.
As we remarked to a friend recently, whatever one thinks of Putin, it is clear that he is an implacable enemy of Islamist radicals. The Chechen war stands as a monument to his Machiavellian ruthlessness in dealing with such people. So-called collateral damage definitely wasn’t on his mind much. In order to pacify the place, he simply ordered his military to raze the capital Grozny. Once Grozny was reduced to sufficiently small pieces of rubble, the army combed the surrounding landscape and shot everything that moved funny. Then a sort of local mafia boss was installed as the new governor, to ensure the place remained pacified.
We suspect that the Middle East is a different kettle of fish though. Restoring something akin to the decades of pan-Arab nationalist oppression seems a highly dubious proposition. Too much has happened, and the place is packed with armed groups that will continue to be at each other’s throats no matter what.
Putin is merely acting in line with old KGB traditions though. Here is an excerpt from a 20 year old newspaper report on how the KGB treated Islamist kidnappers aligned with Hezbollah who had taken Soviet diplomats hostage in Lebanon and had made the mistake of killing one of them:
One could probably call that an exchange of messages of increasing intensity.
Of course there remain differences over Assad’s fate, but they may be smaller than appears on the surface. Perhaps Syria will end up partitioned at some point, with Assad’s Alawite clan controlling the part that contains Russia’s Mediterranean port.
It seems it is high time for a strategic rethink in the GWoT, but powerful forces are arrayed against it. Apart from the fact that a truly huge racket is at stake, the situation is also reminiscent of the proverbial guy with the hammer – everything looks like a nail to him. So we should reasonably expect more of the same, only in even grander style (as the so-called “surge” has shown, any successes tend not only to be temporary, but have a habit to soon give way to even greater disasters).
At least we can all be comforted by recent news that there is no reason to worry about the euro zone. As Mish relates, Keynesian economist Nouriel Roubini has rediscovered the broken window fallacy by arguing that the Paris attacks will “help the euro zone economy”. What is it with these geniuses? Paul Krugman has made similar arguments after the WTC attack and the Katrina hurricane. Obviously, it would be best if we just nuked all our cities. We’d have growth out the wazoo!
However, this is perhaps less surprising than it should be. No-one can accuse Keynesians (regardless which prefixes adorn them by way of sect differentiation, i.e., New, neo-, post-,…) of being founts of economic literacy. After all, their master thought aimless ditch digging and pyramid building were viable “economic policies”.
Rumor has it that Mr. Abaaoud was actually killed in Paris last night, when police raided an apartment in the St. Denis district in which a second terror commando was hiding out. However, it is not yet certain whether Abaaoud was actually among the killed.
|November 22nd, 2015||#3|
Join Date: Jul 2014
NEWS & POLITICS
5 Ways the 'War on Terror' Has Changed Your Life
From having your phone and internet data collected to the militarization of the police, the war on terror is having a major affect on American lives.
By Alex Kane / AlterNet August 6, 2013
The leaks from National Security Agency (NSA) whistleblower Edward Snowden over the summer have made one thing abundantly clear: the war on terror has come to affect every single American. The justification for the NSA’s massive surveillance program has been that it helps prevent terrorist attacks, though journalists, analysts and U.S. politicians have cast doubt on those claims.
After the September 11, 2001 attacks, Muslims in the U.S. were systematically targeted, harassed and detained. But soon enough, the war on terror at home became a war where all Americans got caught up in its dragnet.
Now it’s not just Muslims who are affected, though they still remain the most under threat from government power. It’s all Americans--and the powers of the National Security Agency prove that. From having your phone and internet data collected to the militarization of the police, the war on terror is having a major affect on American lives.
Here are 5 ways the war on terror impacts you.
1. Phone Data
The first major Guardian story by Glenn Greenwald resulting from Snowden’s leaks was on a secret court order requiring Verizon to give the NSA information on all phone calls made on its system. The specific information collected from these calls is “metadata,” or the “information generated as you use technology” that can include the “date and time you called somebody or the location from which you last accessed your email,” as the Guardian notes. These calls included those within the U.S. and those between domestic and international callers. The secret Verizon order was renewed by the Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court last month, as it must be every three months.
But it’s not just Verizon callers who are having their “metadata” collected. After Greenwald’s first story was published, the Wall Street Journalreported that customers of AT&T and Sprint also have their metadata collected under a similar court order.
Millions and millions of Americans are having information about who they call and where they call from collected by the government. And that’s just a start to how the war on terror is impacting you.
2. NSA Data For Criminal Investigations
Yesterday, Reuters reported that information collected from government agencies, including the NSA, was being sent to local law enforcement for use in criminal investigations. It’s an example of how the war on drugs is bleeding into the war on terror.
Reuters reported that the Drug Enforcement Agency’s Special Operations Division (SOD) takes the lead on this. The SOD is comprised of a number of partner agencies, like the NSA, CIA, and the Department of Homeland Security. Information that comes from phone records, foreign governments, wiretaps and more is funneled to local law enforcement authorities to crack crime cases, particularly drug cases.
What’s worse is that the law enforcement authorities who receive this information then try to cover up that they got it from this program. The data the NSA is collecting is now being used to target Americans accused of ordinary crimes.
3. Internet Data
In addition to phone “metadata” being collected, the NSA also collects all sorts of information from your Internet activities. One NSA program called PRISM collects “metadata” from a number of Internet companies like Microsoft, Yahoo and Facebook.
While the NSA claims to have “direct” access to the servers of these companies, they have denied that and only say they comply with specific court orders. Whatever the case, it’s clear that the NSA collects data about Americans’ internet use.
Last week, the Guardian’s Greenwald published another major story on yet another NSA program that targets Internet use. Greenwald reported that “a top secret National Security Agency program allows analysts to search with no prior authorization through vast databases containing emails, online chats and the browsing histories of millions of individuals.”
The program, called XKeyscore, show how individual analysts can easily search through massive databases about Americans’ internet use. No court order is needed for this type of searching.
4. Your Tax Money Pays for the NSA
At the same time that the NSA is collecting data on you, you’re paying for them to do so. The NSA’s budget comes from the American taxpayer, and so taxpayers are giving this powerful agency the money to carry out their surveillance.
As CNNreported in June, when the NSA scandal first broke out, “ it's impossible to say exactly how much money the NSA is given to conduct its surveillance efforts” because the details of its budget are classified. But there’s at least some information that gives a hint as to how much the NSA is costing the American taxpayer.
In total, the intelligence budget was $75 billion last year. And transparency advocate Steven Aftergood estimates that about $10 billion goes to the NSA.
Additionally, the American taxpayer is paying for the rest of the war on terror at home. That includes the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s budget, which is used for terror investigations and hiring informants to bait young, troubled Muslims into saying they want to commit terrorism--even if there was no real threat.
5. Militarized Police Force
Another way American taxpayers are footing the bill for the war on terror is how they’re paying for the militarization of America’s police force.
Police militarization began before September 11, as author Radley Balkonotes. After 9/11, the militarization continued apace. America’s police departments now needed to fight crime and terrorism.
Police departments were given high-grade weapons that were unnecessary to combat local crime. The departments received things like armored personnel carriers, aircraft and boats. They also began getting machine guns from the military in order to fight terrorism.
“The main effect of 9/11 on domestic policing is the DHS grant program, which writes huge checks to local police departments across the country to purchase machine guns, helicopters, tanks, and armored personnel carriers,” Balko told VICE magazine.
Last edited by Robbie Key; November 22nd, 2015 at 05:46 PM.
|November 26th, 2015||#4|
Join Date: Jul 2014
plenty of links at source
By WakingTimes November 18, 2015 25 Comments
6 Painful Truths About the War on Terrorism
Big Brother French FlagDylan Charles, Editor
If you were 4 years old when 9/11 occurred in 2001, then you’re now old enough to enlist and fight in the war on terror. Recent geo-political events suggest that this conflict may endure for some generations to come, so, regretfully, your children may also get to participate. The war on terrorism is apparently part of our culture and part of our lives now.
“The towers are gone now, reduced to bloody rubble, along with all hopes for peace in our time, in the United States or any other country. Make no mistake about it: We are at war now — with somebody — and we will stay at war with that mysterious Enemy for the rest of our lives. It will be a Religious War, a sort of Christian Jihad, fueled by religious hatred and led by merciless fanatics on both sides. It will be guerilla warfare on a global scale, with no front lines and no identifiable enemy.” – Hunter S. Thompson
By no means a prophet, Hunter S. Thompson was just an eccentric observer with a knack for connecting the dots between political events and the ongoing mainstream media narrative that supports and manufactures consent for the oligarchy. When taken at face value, the terror script is indeed a rather convincing and motivating story, but when you dismantle the official fiction and bring the hidden pieces into the picture, the truth about the war on terror is just too heavy for conscious people to ignore any longer.
As it persists, international terrorism is guaranteed to increase, and as time goes by, we learn more and more about the real reasons why we’ve been forced into this apocalyptic conflict. After nearly 15 years of kicking down doors, drone bombing villagers, shattering societies, and mourning our own senselessly dead, here are 6 things we now know for sure about the war on terrorism.
The conflict was engineered from the onset to break up, destroy and destabilize most of the oil-producing countries in the Middle East and Northern Africa. The war on terrorism is about control of oil, about conquering national economies and turning them over to ‘foreign investors,’ about demonizing Muslim nations, about creating a lawless territory in which to develop Western controlled mercenary armies like ISIS, about protecting Israel’s interests in the region, about destabilizing Europe, about opening access to the poppy fields of Afghanistan, and about punishing those nations which dared to defy the international banking cartel by moving to avert the petro-dollar.
The war on terrorism is also about radically altering the legal framework of Western governments to allow for greater surveillance, control and the militarization of once free societies. The aim is to continually broaden the definition of terrorism so that any act of defiance against the state or the corporate oligarchy, whether advocating for human rights, the environment, or any other issue of popular concern, can be persecuted without due process. The war on terror will be used to target American citizens who support the idea of limited government and strive to maintain the protections afforded by the Constitution and the Bill of Rights of the United States of America.
Additionally, the war on terror is about creating new markets for the security industry and opening steady income streams for war profiteers and arms manufacturers, so that a relative minority can profit heavily from the continuance of the war and the waste, swindling and destruction involved.
2.) The war on terror doesn’t stop terror, because it is terror.
The Western nations most heavily invested in the war on terror are also the nations most heavily involved in global arms trading, which gives advanced weaponry to any despotic tin pot dictator with an oilfield. And France just happens to be the world’s number one exporter of arms per capita. The Western ‘coalition’ regularly kills civilians in other nations directly and indirectly, which is in and of itself a very real type of terrorism.
Regional arms sales by the UK.
3.) Our worst terrorist enemies are the products of government, the military industrial complex and Western intelligence agencies.
The Mujahideen was originally organized, funded, trained and supplied by the CIA to oppose the Soviet Union. The Mujahideen became Al Qaeda with the assistance of Saudi Arabia and American training, arms and financial aid. Al Qaeda has morphed into, or been replaced with ISIS, who is the creation of the military industrial complex, the US, Israel, the UK and France, and is supported by some 40 other nations who knowingly trade and deal with ISIS.
4.) The mainstream media plays a crucial in perpetuating the war on terrorism.
The primary role of the corporate-owned and government-controlled mainstream media is to transform selected acts of terror into enduring symbols that can be used again and again to reinforce the war on terror narrative. Their secondary role is to keep the level of tension and stress as high as possible by ceaselessly over-reacting to non-events and over-reporting on non-issues, thereby keeping the public captivated and hypnotized by an ongoing drama so that when a major event does occur it has the greatest possible psychological impact.
Reporting on global terrorism is duplicitous and hypocritical because certain events have more franchise than others in influencing public support for government policy changes and military actions. In the practical world of marketing, French flags pictured draped over national monuments at night-time will go much further in promoting the war on terror than Kenyan flags draped over African monuments.
The media uses shock and awe in a war of psychological attrition against the public. The objective is to incapacitate and sideline people from participating in dissent, while scaring people into acquiescence to any imposed government authority or security measures.
5.) State-sponsored False flag attacks still work to achieve political objectives.
There is a tremendous continual international effort underway to expose the true facts behind each new terror attack, terror plot, and major government lie. The alternative media is growing in reach and effectiveness, however, the reality is that the Hegelian dialectic of problem, reaction, solution still works on a shell-shocked public.
6.) Suicide is more deadly to our soldiers than any terrorist organization.
The war on terrorism represents the first time in US history that suicide has been the leading cause of death of US soldiers. The psychological impact of this type of conflict is unique and the suicide rate of returning soldiers may be our best evidence that the war is unwinnable.
The goal of the war on terror is transform people into willing participants in chaos, mayhem and murder, or to turn them into collateral damage. Nobody is born a terrorist, and we are all being set up as dispensable pawns in an orchestrated clash of civilizations.
The truth is out there. When you cut through the propaganda, emotional triggers, and the divisive nature of discourse today, what’s left is the truth that the war on terror is something that we must end. The rise in global consciousness and our willingness to speak out may
be our only hope.
|March 22nd, 2017||#5|
Join Date: Jul 2014
It's All Good: The Real Reason We Accept the Fraudulent War on Terror
March 21, 2017
by Chris Bollyn
After my latest speaking tour, I have decided to write a book about the fraudulent War on Terror, which is really a Zionist/Israeli war agenda in disguise.
Why write a book about the War on Terror?
The War on Terror has destroyed many thousands of lives as it has grossly perverted our thinking and plundered our national wealth. It has gone on now for fifteen and a half years and there is virtually no organized resistance to it. The main reason for writing this book is to help people understand the deception because we can only resist the War on Terror if we understand what it is - in reality.
The wars or "operations" waged under the rubric of the War on Terror since 9/11 are costing U.S. taxpayers $8.36 million per hour, for a total of $1.75 Trillion since 2001. Homeland Security, the domestic front against terrorism, is costing U.S. taxpayers $6.74 million per hour, or nearly $750 billion since 9/11. Together, the foreign and the domestic security operations have cost the U.S. more than $2.5 Trillion (i.e. 2,500 billions). (Source: NationalPriorities.org)
This is clearly not sustainable. Rather than rebuilding America and taking care of our people, we are pouring billions of borrowed dollars down the drain and getting absolutely nothing back that will benefit the American people, or the world, in any way. We are squandering money to destroy lives, nations, and infrastructure across the Middle East like the worst of barbarians, and have been doing so at a ferocious rate for 26 years – continuously since Desert Storm in January 1991.
With all the wars, and the millions of displaced refugees trekking about the planet, you might expect there would be a vibrant anti-war movement of concerned citizens demanding an end to the war fighting, but there isn't. Why are Americans not standing up in huge numbers and demanding an end to this utterly self-destructive War on Terror?
IT'S ALL GOOD.
The answer is simple. We have been deceived into thinking that the War on Terror is a good thing, a valiant struggle against terrorists who mean to attack us like we were attacked on September 11, 2001. I will use a comment from a reader to a recent post on Facebook to illustrate my point.
I posted something the other day about the 26,171 bombs dropped by the United States in 2016, under a president who had been awarded the Nobel Peace Prize when he was elected in 2008. Last year was the fifteenth year of the War on Terror, a year in which the U.S. bombed seven nations, dropping an average of 72 bombs per day.
Most of the bombs were dropped in Iraq and Syria, 12,192 in Syria and 12,095 in Iraq. Afghanistan was bombed 1,337 times and Libya 496. The numbers are based on the percentage of total coalition airstrikes carried out in 2016 by the United States in Operation Inherent Resolve (OIR), the counter-Islamic State campaign. Daily OIR strike data at: http://www.inherentresolve.mil/News/Strike-Releases/
As a response, I had the following exchange with a reader in Idaho:
D.S.: Well, if it's killing people who are killing innocent people, it's all good.http://bollyn.com/#article_15867
|November 5th, 2017||#6|
Join Date: Jul 2014
Defense Department: The War On Terror Has Cost $250 Million A Day For 16 Years
BY JAY CASSANO ON 10/31/17 AT 4:13 PM
American taxpayers have spent $1.46 trillion on wars abroad since September 11, 2001.
The Department of Defense periodically releases a “cost of war” report. The newly released version, obtained by the Federation of American Scientists Secrecy News blog, covers the time from the September 11th terrorist attacks through mid-2017.
The Afghanistan War from 2001 to 2014 and Iraq War from 2003 to 2011 account for the bulk of expenses: more than $1.3 trillion. The continuing presence in Afghanistan and aerial anti-ISIS operations in Iraq and Syria since 2014 have cost a combined $120 billion.
The report’s costs include only direct war-related expenses such as operating and maintaining bases, procuring equipment, and paying for and feeding troops. It most notably does not include the expense of veteran’s benefits for troops who serve in these wars or the intelligence community’s expenses related to Global War on Terror.
A 2011 paper from Harvard Kennedy School professor Linda Bilmes estimated the cost of veterans’ benefits as $600 billion to $1 trillion over the next 40 years. That number was based on 482,364 veterans who were receiving compensation for disability connected to service as of February 2011. Since then, the number of veterans receiving compensation for service-related disability has increased drastically.
According to the Veterans’ Benefits Administration’s 2016 annual benefits report , 1,060,408 veterans are receiving service-related benefits, averaging $15,907 a year. The total annual benefits for Global War on Terror veterans’ benefits are currently $16.8 billion per year, which over the next 40 years would total $674 billion, placing it firmly within Bilmes’ original 2011 estimate.
According to the Congressional Research Service, the only war in U.S. history to cost more than the Global War on Terror is World War II, at more than $4.1 trillion in present dollars. Direct war-related expenses from the Vietnam War cost $738 billion in today's dollars.
|November 6th, 2017||#7|
Join Date: May 2009